Happyville Library

Tuesday, May 22, 2007


Dear Friends,

For a few days now I have been digging through my mind, trying to come up with the right words to write for the final post on the Happyville Library blog, but it’s nearly impossible. Don’t expect eloquence.

When I started writing this blog, it was my anonymous method of voicing my opinions and citing observations, completely subjective and prone to comical exaggerations and embellishments, at everyone’s expense, including my own. For a time, long ago, it was more fun than should be legal. Lily and Melanie would help me lay out what I’d write about, and each of them had a unique and hilarious view of their own to share, and they even commented when I finally published the finished product. Oh, those were the good ol’ days!

Then I got kicked out of my old domain by some Dummies – I’m still bitter.

With the chaos of that move came the introduction of my blog to our dear director, Maya, who has become so addicted to it that no consequence I threaten her with can persuade her to stop reading it. Due to the fact that she was such a devoted reader, many of my friends and coworkers turned on me, making my life a living hell and causing my health to take a dangerous dive. When I asked everyone I cared about to stop reading the blog out of respect for our friendship, they all complied without hesitation, except Maya. Not only does she read every post, but she lets me know she’s read them with comments she makes to me in passing. After she discovered that I was deleting posts to preserve some of the anonymity I had left, and in an effort to stave off any damage my opinions might cause, she subscribed to my blog through an RSS so that she could read anything I published, even if I deleted it 5 minutes later. Clearly my feelings and my health were less important than her access to the silliness that I write about. And that hurts. But she’s the director, so what can I do?

Some wanted me to kill the blog long ago, but I am nothing if not a stubborn mule, and I refused to give it up on anyone else’s terms but my own. I suffered greatly for this, in more ways than I can quantify here.

Without Melanie, Lily, Cassie and Ally actively participating anymore, it was no longer fun for me. I felt myself struggling to come up with anything remotely funny to say, and without the humor, there really was no point to the blog at all. Who wants to read a bitter, despondent librarian’s whining in 2,000 word essays? No one!

Hoping that the phase would pass, I forced the posts, borrowed funniness from the world around me, and tried to keep my chin up, thinking that one day it would regain the thrill and amusement it used to bring me. That day will not be coming. It cannot be restored.

So, what I’ve done is create a new blog, where I will write about whatever I want, but I will leave my work at work. If you’d like to continue reading, and I hope that you do, you can find my new blog at If I Ran the Universe... Please don’t expect stories about the library, my coworkers, crazy patrons, or rogue turds. Writing about work is not going to be a part of it.

Happyville Library is gone.

I’m very sorry, folks. There are hundreds of other library blogs just as funny, if not leagues funnier than this one, so I’m sure you won’t be at a loss for material to keep your library blog needs fulfilled. However, I will miss the camaraderie we all had when commiserating about our jobs. Perhaps I’ll see you in the comments of other blogs.

What I absolutely cannot end this blog without doing is thanking all of you. For almost two years I have vented on this site and you have given me the kind of support and affirmation I couldn’t get anywhere else. Your generosity brought tears to my eyes and your shared stories often left me doubled over in laughter. I would have quit long ago if it wasn’t for the constant encouragement and positive feedback that hundreds of readers gave me.

Some of you have been with me almost since the beginning, and perhaps none longer than dear Beckeye and John Left. Others have actually reached out to me through email and we have become friends. Sheila and Annie, I adore you both! David C. from Canadia, and Not-So-Anon-AV-Boy, you are both in serious danger of actually having to meet me in person. Carla Snuggs, (my favorite library school student, who must now wield a freshly printed MLIS) you have no idea what it meant to me to participate in the interviews for your class, and the incredible flattery you bestowed upon me when you said “your librarian” was better than the librarians chosen by your classmates. You, quite literally, got me through the first 3 months of my new job and kept me from quitting outright, so thank you! Your faith in me carried me through when no one else had any. Phil, Nonanon, Romana, and Travelin’ Tracy: thank you so much for your kindness and encouragement! Lastly but not leastly, Leelu, you must surely be the sister I was always supposed to have. You get me through the day, but most importantly, you just “get” me.

A special thanks to Steven Cohen, who repeatedly recommended my writing (and my long-ago-closed Café Press store) to his own readers. You are my favorite pimp!

To everyone who has ever emailed me, commented or come back repeatedly to read my blog: thank you so much. You made it all worthwhile.

I hope to see you all again.


43 comment(s):

Sheesh, you make it sound like a sad occasion. As if someone died. There is no death here. It is not an end, simply a transition into something new and different. I'm happy that you'll still be blogging, because I enjoy your writing--whether it be about library hilarity or something else. I'm sorry that you have gone through a period of frustration and unhappiness due to the blog, but I have faith that you'll soon find the enjoyment in it again. Sometimes we just need a fresh start :)

Echoes in a Nomad's Head

P.S. You need to fix the link to your new blog . . . without the "http://" in front, it tries to link to a page within this blog, which of course doesn't exist.

By Blogger Phil, at 5/22/2007 12:49 AM  

As a longtime lurker, first let me say many, many thanks for the laughs, the grins and for exposing the odd painful spot, not only about our users but about ourselves.

I will be checking you out at the new site, but just wanted to share my appreciation and say that the Happyville Library will definitely be missed.

By Blogger Michelle McLean, at 5/22/2007 1:21 AM  

How odd that just last weekend I was thinking about the line I seem to have crossed in which I no longer find "odd behavior in the library" noticeable. Add to that your health concerns, and I can definitely understand your decision to close Happyville.

I will follow you anywhere: your writing skills are astounding, and I love your point of view.

Thank you for, among everything else you've given me, your honesty.

By Blogger Cat., at 5/22/2007 7:37 AM  

I've been mostly lurking for years, and I'll be very sad to see you go. I've enjoyed all of your library-related posts, and I hope your new blog is just as great!

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5/22/2007 7:39 AM  

I am sorry that you feel the need to do this, I for one, plan on continuing to read your new blog, but will miss your stories of work very much. I hope you are able to continue to vent in a healthy way to the supportive coworkers you do have - venting is important way to keep our sanity intact while working public services. (I just noticed you link to my blog - if you ever create a LJ account, please let me know so you can read my currently friends-locked worked related vents too!).

By Blogger Sarah, at 5/22/2007 8:10 AM  

I've been a lurker for a long time and I'm saddened at the loss of my favorite blog. Your blog helped me make it through many rough patches when I thought of nothing but quitting my library job. The public are cruel, demanding, impatient, and trying. And then there are coworkers and the almighty powers-that-be to contend with! Happyville made all of my struggles worth it, to know there are others out there with the same struggles, the same stresses, the same experiences. Though I did quit my job for the joys of staying home with my precious baby girl, I kept reading and relating to many of your posts. Just please know that your blog is/was the best library blog ever!

However, what's most important is your health and happiness. I will follow to your new blog and I wish you the best.

By Anonymous manda, at 5/22/2007 8:46 AM  

*sings* Happy trails to you until we meet again. . .

I hope your new blog will be free of Smurf infestations. Unless you're choking them. Then we can see what color they turn. :)

By Blogger Leelu, at 5/22/2007 9:01 AM  

Happy Villain,

I have to thank you for the many laughs you shared with us. I knew it was going to be a good day if you had a new post. I'll be subscribing to your new blog because, whether its about work or not, your writing makes me laugh.

With the last post of Happyville Library comes the question: If the Happyville patrons poop in the stacks and no one blogs about it, will it still be stinky and gross?


By Blogger Natalie, at 5/22/2007 9:13 AM  

I'll follow you anywhere, but I'm leaving the feed for your new blog in my "library" folder for old time's sake. Happy trails, Happy Villain.

By Blogger Shy, at 5/22/2007 9:35 AM  

Very sad to see Happyville go but I hope you keep posting your pics on the new blog!!
Also keep up DE's blog as he's a cutie!!!

By Blogger Magnoire, at 5/22/2007 9:45 AM  

You will be sorely missed. Thank you for the laughs, and for reminding me so often that I am not alone when it comes to the craziness of our workplaces. I will definitely follow along. In the end, take care of yourself, for that should come first. Best of luck and onward.

By Anonymous Dances With Books, at 5/22/2007 11:12 AM  

No, you can't leave! I need your blog too much for you to go!! You always show me that I'm not alone in Library Weirdo Land.

I will definitely keep up with your new page, but don't take this one down because I haven't read everything yet! Please??


By Blogger Samantha Stephens, at 5/22/2007 11:24 AM  

I only discovered you recently but I love to read your blog. I WILL follow you to your new blog, for the writing alone, if nothing else. You've made library work more enjoyable for me, if for no other reason but that there's someone who understands what it's like. Thanks for being here. I'm looking forward to visiting your new blog! Like Phil said, not a death, a transition! Don't be sad! Be Happy...somewhere else!

By Anonymous gardenbuzzy, at 5/22/2007 11:33 AM  

This always happens to me! I find a blog I like so I skip back to their very first post and read through in order. I just got to halfway through January 2007 and then I come back and find that they quit and deleted their archives. Argh!

But your reasoning is totally understandable, I hope all goes well with all that you do.

It's kinda weird, I found this blog through Wide Lawns and she just recently reformatted her blog to not include any work stuff, only stories from her past.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5/22/2007 11:45 AM  

I'm very glad you'll still be blogging. It's great fun to read your blog! I will miss your work stories, but I hope your health improves. Take care!


By Blogger Rachel, at 5/22/2007 12:34 PM  


You have been a wonderful part of my day. But no one could wish you unhappiness in order to give me joy.

Hey, what am I saying: sacrifice yourself, I need to laugh!

Good luck,

Dr. Remulak

By Blogger Dr. Remulak, at 5/22/2007 12:44 PM  

I am going to miss you terribly since everything you wrote about at Happyville has happened to me at my library. You were a voice that made me feel sane when all hell was breaking loose in the stacks and the whole world was topsy-turvey. When our porn filter blocked your blog, I made it a point to howl at the director that this was just WRONG and got it unblocked.
I had a feeling something this wonderful couldn't go on forever, just like Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows will be the last episode of a wonderful story.
Best to you always.

By Blogger Deb, at 5/22/2007 2:11 PM  

Oh my... as Eeyore would say:
..."Why?" and sometimes he thought, "Wherefore?" and sometimes he thought, "Inasmuch as which?" and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about." which about sums up my feelings. I will miss your library blog a lot. Good luck with your new one and all your endevors.

By Blogger The Eeyore Librarian, at 5/22/2007 2:30 PM  

So sorry to see you go, so looking forward to your writings on your new blog. I will miss Happyville. It has been very helpful to me, working in a strangeville of my own, to laugh through your hilarious posts. Thank you for everything!

Sincerely hoping your health improves,

Good luck and thank you!

New York librarian

By Anonymous New York librarian, at 5/22/2007 4:04 PM  

very sad.. I have lurked for years and will need to find another outlet now when library bureaucracy and silliness get me down. the problems are the same the world over!
Kay (New Zealand)

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5/22/2007 4:48 PM  

[Sniff, sniff] So sad that you're abandoning this blog. Have enjoyed it for a long time now. Glad to know you're not going too far. :-) Good luck and good health to you, H.V.!

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5/22/2007 7:32 PM  

I don't think I can live in world in which the Happyville Library blog does not exist. You're killing me here!

By Anonymous Jess, at 5/22/2007 10:32 PM  

Aw, that's a shame! I never knew that libraries could be so much fun until I started reading your blog! I'm honored to have been here since the beginning. :)

I'll definitely be reading your new blog.

By Blogger BeckEye, at 5/22/2007 10:47 PM  

I am really bummed to see this blog end. I loved reading your doses of library humor, often comparing it to my own day and sharing the funniest lines with my husband, letting him know that I'm not the only one who recognizes what a crazy place the library is! I will, however, begin reading your new blog. I'm looking forward to it!

By Blogger Amanda, at 5/22/2007 11:23 PM  

Hey, it's really okay! I got tired of blogging about a year ago and gave it up. At least you're continuing with a new blog, thank goodness.

You're a very good writer; perhaps you should start working on a novel. It could be about a librarian's misadventures or something akin to that.

No matter what you do, just remember that you have a fan here in Colorado. I'm rooting for you. Get healthy and stay snarky!

Now to check out your new blog...

By Anonymous char, at 5/23/2007 11:24 AM  

I too am sorry to see this blog go, but totally understand why you need to stop. I look forward to reading your new blog!

By Blogger Anne, at 5/23/2007 2:41 PM  

I agree with whoever said, this is TRAGIC! Of course I'll follow you to your new blog, and of course I wish you all the best, and will keep on wishing it. But man, I will miss the surreal Happyville Library stories, mainly because they are so creepily familiar (who knew weirdness was so, well, fricking universal?!?! How depressing is that?). Here's to you with a little toast I wrote for the occasion: May your coworkers always have hilarious bad attitudes, may your doggie always give you comfort, and may the damn patrons always stay on THEIR side of the desk! (Sorry for the swearing. But sometimes it's necessary, as you know.) Now. Off to bigger and better things!

By Anonymous Nonanon, at 5/23/2007 2:48 PM  

Ditto Ditto Ditto.

Will miss this blog so much! How to survive where honesty does not thrive!

Thanks again for the laughs.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5/23/2007 5:59 PM  

Another library student who will miss these stories (mostly leaving me thinking "what the $*** have I gotten myself into?"), since before the move to 'librariosis', but I understand, and I'll certainly grab the feed for your new one. THanks, and good luck!

By Blogger mrgnphnx, at 5/23/2007 6:49 PM  

Thanks for the laughs so far, and good luck!

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5/23/2007 7:18 PM  

I can't believe it! I am truly distraught!! I am going to miss this blog so much, but I am so glad to know of your new one. Rock on! :)

By Blogger Amelia, at 5/24/2007 2:53 PM  

Gonna miss this blog. :( I really enjoyed your tales of woe. Thanks for the fish.

Will be reading up on your new site :)

By Blogger Sparky, at 5/24/2007 6:55 PM  

It makes me sad, but I'm consoled by the fact that you will still be blogging about other things! Do you mind if we still send you OUR crazy library stories?

By Anonymous allison, at 5/25/2007 9:52 AM  

Awwwwgh. Me sad. :-( One of my colleagues came across your original blog and used to read out the entries at work. After she left, I missed the Happyville fix, so started logging on myself every couple of days. It's been a joy. But understand your decision and your health is more important, and if it's not fun, well why bother. I'll definately be lurking in your new blog (which sounds quite creepy), cos even though your work stories are hilarious and I'll miss them, you have a gift and are a tremendously great writer and whatever you say will be worth reading.
From a lurking Australian (I think there's a few of us!)

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5/26/2007 2:54 AM  

Yeah, keeping up with a blog without tiring yourself out by just griping about work is a challenge - I'm surpised you kept it up this long. Thanks for a lot of fun reads, and here's hoping for a more tranquil job...

By Blogger Michelle M. Welch, at 5/26/2007 7:04 PM  

See? I knew heaps of people would be upset!!

You did a great job, and now you're doing it somewhere else. Thanks for keeping the links to those other blogs - it's so important to know you're not alone with the ghastly public and screwy patrons.

I'll miss Happy Villain, but geez, I still miss Lib Extraordinaire and Libs for "special" people.

Go and have a happy healthy life,a and share what you feel like with us.

Oh, and thanks for the mention!!

Very loud cheers from Tassie!!

Annie xxxx

By Anonymous librarian nervosa, at 5/30/2007 2:53 AM  

I wanted you tknow that my Leave No Trace post was inspired by you. I have always enjoyed how you can write so well about poop that I only hoped my own story would be worth reading! Although I am sad to read that this blog is ending I am overjoyed in knowing that you are starting a new one. I get to learn more about you and your opinions. That's great!

Oh, and can I mention that whenever I think about traveling to your neck of the woods I always think about writing you a personal email. I would love to meet you...

By Blogger Travelin' Tracy, at 6/03/2007 4:53 PM  

Oh, my gosh!! I've been so busy and so far behind in reading blogs-now I feel really guilty. :(

I'm so sorry you're ending this blog-but I'm glad you're starting a new one!!! Now I'm off to catch up on all your new entries. :)

*HUGS* You rock!

By Blogger Romana1, at 6/04/2007 12:28 PM  

Hate to see you go off the radar of LibraryRantsville (Hey, now that's not a bad title). You've been one of my daily reads for the past couple of years.

By Blogger Juice S. Aaron, at 6/05/2007 9:43 AM  

Goddammit! Bloglines screwed me over or I did something stupid. In any case, I completely missed this post. I just thought you might be taking a break. I'm sorry we won't be get getting anymore stories from Happyville, but I'm glad that you're gonna keep on blogging.

The only reason I came to check was I was going to recommend this blog on a discussion board, but I thought I'd better check to see what was up. At least we still have the archives.

I'll miss Happyville Library.

By Blogger Vampire Librarian, at 6/19/2007 8:13 PM  

It was fun reading your posts and as a librarian, I hope you find another Happyville because very few of them exist.
Thanks for the laughs.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7/10/2007 10:02 AM  

Happyville will definitely be missed. Farewell with your new blog.

By Anonymous Woeful, at 7/16/2007 3:08 AM  

I miss Happyville. I hope you reconsider and revive it once Maya thinks it's dead. I'm keeping it in my bloglines in the hopes that you will one day soon revive it!

By Blogger Book Bag, at 7/22/2007 10:05 PM  

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